Even though the city and county officials in San Francisco subscribe to the Soros view of criminal justice that has driven the crime wave, drugs, and homelessness in the bay city, it had so far been skipped by the wave of Soros-supported prosecutors being elected in some major cities. That looks like it’s about to change, as career public defender and son of terrorists Chesa Boudin has narrowly won the race for district attorney.
Electing Boudin in San Francisco at a time when it is leading the nation in burglary, larceny, shoplifting, vandalism, other property crimes, and street encampment is akin to dousing a burning inferno with lighter fluid. Who is Chesa Boudin? Here is a profile from KGO, a local ABC affiliate:
A career defense attorney, Deputy Public Defender Chesa Boudin is running on a restorative justice platform to become San Francisco’s next district attorney. He has defended indigent clients in more than 300 cases, including felonies like attempted murder, shootings, stabbings, kidnappings and auto theft.
Boudin touts his experience having two incarcerated parents for stoking his desire to change the course of crime and punishment. His mother Kathy Boudin and father David Gilbert became involved with the Weather Underground in the 1970s. In 1981, the pair played a key role in the murder of Brinks armed car guard during an armed robbery in a New York City suburb. Two other Weather Underground members, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, then adopted Boudin and raised him as their son.
The robbery resulted in the murder of two NYPD cops.
Boudin is the latest in a series of pro-criminal foxes being elected to DA henhouses who are fueling the movement to stop prosecuting crimes that have led to the deterioration of cities like San Francisco – the exact opposite of the “broken windows policing” that worked so well in reversing the crime wave in the 1990s. In fact, he is promising to prosecute ICE and police officers for doing their jobs.
Last month, Manhattan Institute fellow Heather Mac Donald wrote a riveting expose on San Francisco’s culture of homelessness and petty theft in the autumn edition of City Journal magazine. Her firsthand reporting, where she actually tried to purchase fentanyl on the street, found that San Francisco’s refusal to enforce drug laws, property crime laws, social norms, and public order has led to a surge in drugs, petty crimes, theft, and a breakdown of public order, which are all collectively fueling the encampment culture on the streets, vagrant behavior, and incentivizing even other cities’ homeless people to camp out there.
“The police have no incentive to enforce norms around public behavior,” said the veteran crime reporter and analyst on my podcast last month. “People are now drawn from all over the country to come to West Coast cities and party with impunity.”
Mac Donald also noted that the refusal of the city to enforce immigration laws has allowed Honduran drug dealers to act with freedom and further spread their cheap poison on the city’s streets, ensnaring even more people into the street encampment culture. “I bought drugs completely as myself,” said Mac Donald. “The drug dealing on the part of the illegal Honduran drug dealers is so flagrant there, I wanted to test what is their threshold of suspicion since I don’t look like your average junkie, but I scored a very good deal, all cash transaction, and there was not a chance of enforcement.”
The new prosecutor-elect is promising to create an “immigrant defense unit” within the DA’s office to “stand up to Trump on immigration” and to subsidize “universal legal representation” for criminal aliens spreading drugs around the city.
We are forever being lectured to about the cost of incarceration, but nobody is focusing on the cost of unsafe streets. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that police records show a record 203,000 hours in off-duty work was logged by city cops over the past year, over five times more than in the previous year. Businesses are hiring off-duty cops in record numbers, because unlike private security guards, off-duty cops can actually carry weapons, and they maintain direct contact with the police department via radio. According to retired San Francisco Police Officers Association President Martin Halloran, the increased crime “goes hand in hand with the homeless problem and the drug epidemic in the city.”
The deterioration of public order is reverberating throughout all of California after passage of Proposition 47 and other new policies that have downgraded property and drug crimes. Barnini Chakraborty of Fox News reported earlier this month that Golden State cities like San Francisco have black market gangs that openly steal retail merchandise and sell it on the black market knowing that there will be no consequences to deter them. Also, the lack of enforcement of both property and drug crimes is driving the trend of ubiquitous theft in order to sustain the drug habits of many vagrants.
Much of it is being fueled by a “sophisticated network of international dealers who cross the border to buy stolen goods,” which is the result of not enforcing immigration laws. Those very networks will now be treated better than American criminals by Boudin.
The problem is not just low-level crime, and it’s not just in San Francisco. Last week, I reported on how the amalgamation of weak-on-domestic-crime laws and lack of immigration enforcement has led to a surge in violent crime among gangs in San Diego. In Sacramento, workers keeping up the capitol grounds are now being attacked by the growing homeless population in the area. The workers are forced to carry pepper spray and pay for it out of their own pockets.
Recently, in response to a letter from California Governor Gavin Newsom asking for federal funds to deal with the homeless problem, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson sent a letter telling him to essentially stop causing the problem in the first place. “Your letter seeks more Federal dollars for California from hardworking American taxpayers but fails to admit that your State and local policies have played a major role in creating the current crisis,” wrote Carson on September 18.
Among the factors contributing to homelessness, Carson cited the policies to “undercut the ability of police officers to enforce quality-of-life laws, remove encampments, and connect our most vulnerable populations with the supportive services they need to get off the streets.” He also charged that California has “divested” itself from physiatrist hospitals for the mentally ill and has also “doubled down on sanctuary State and city policies and provided benefits to illegal and inadmissible aliens.”
It’s good to see the Trump administration pushing back against this anarchy, but it must be consistent in also opposing the jailbreak movement. The administration mistakenly took advice from Kim Kardashian to pass the dangerous jailbreak bill for gang-bangers and drug traffickers. Meanwhile, Kardashian is pushing a stay of execution for a Texas man convicted of raping and murdering a 19-year-old girl in 1996.
Rather than teetering on joining the jailbreak movement, Trump should remain consistently tough on crime and use California as an example against efforts to turn all of America into the cesspool it has become. He should heed the words of Heather Mac Donald: “Tolerating street vagrancy is a choice that cities make; for the public good, in San Francisco and elsewhere, that choice should be unmade.”
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.